Kim is a member of the Flyers staff over at The Checking Line and also covers the Flyers for Chicks Dig The Long Ball. She is one of the very few Flyers fans who also loves the Chicago Blackhawks. Check out her personal hockey blog, Sticks and Knobs, and follow her on Twitter. Below, she gives us the top five reasons she loves the Flyers.
5. The History
I haven’t been a Flyers fan my entire life – though I remember watching games with my dad when I was younger, I wasn’t a diehard fan until much later in my life – but I absolutely love the history of the Flyers team and organization.
I love the fact that all of the guys who were brought in during the team’s inaugural year hated the idea of playing in this city, and then grew to love it. I love that the Broad Street Bullies had such a bad reputation, and I love that some current roster players (and a certain new Chicago Blackhawk) try their best to keep the memory of the Bullies alive.
Though the Flyers haven’t won a Stanley Cup in 36 years, they have given us so many great memories over the last few decades that will forever be ingrained in the team’s history.
4. The Fans
Love us or hate us, there’s nothing like Flyers fans. We’re passionate, we can talk Flyers hockey at any time of the day, and we build our connections with others through our love for this hockey team.
Sure, there are some Flyers fans who give others a bad name. We try not to associate ourselves with them at games, unless we decide to get into a screaming/cursing match at them when they’re being obnoxious. It’s “fans” like that who make us notorious to outsiders. But even players themselves have said that they love the fans in Philadelphia. We’re hard to please, but when we’re happy with a team’s performance, we’re ecstatic.
The coolest thing about Flyers fans is that it doesn’t matter who you are, where you’re from, your race, your religion, your gender, your sexual preference – the team connects people from all different walks of life. In a diverse city like Philadelphia, it’s a wonderful thing to have that kind of connection.
3. The Lighter Side
Remember when Lavy punched Ville Leino in the head during a timeout? All the times Scott Hartnell has fallen during his time as a Flyer? The Danny Briere fist pump? One of the greatest things about this team is the lighter side – the camaraderie between players, all of the hilarious FlyersTV videos about Halloween and which Flyer would give the cheapest Christmas presents.
You get to learn a lot about the players when you watch more than just the games. You share a laugh when they do, and it’s a great way to connect with people you normally wouldn’t interact with. The players are somehow relatable, and it makes their fanbase feel much closer to them.
I get a lot of flak for liking teams because of the players that make those teams up, but I would much rather be able to think back to something dumb (and hilarious) Andreas Nodl said during the Skills Competition behind-the-scenes video and laugh than just sit on the sidelines – so to speak – and feel no connection to the team I support whatsoever.
2. The Excitement
Does anyone else’s heart still race when you look back on the 2010 Stanley Cup run?
I know I’m not the only one who gets chills (and, yes, sometimes a few tears in my eyes) reading or hearing about the incredible comeback against Boston. “Simon Gagne! Can you believe it?!” will always be engrained in my brain. “Roaring on in is Jokinen. The save!” is another JJ call I’ll never forget (I’m jumping around, I know, but bear with me). As frustrated as we can get with the Flyers at times, they provide us with so much excitement and so many great times.
Sitting on the edge of our seats, hearts racing, eyes wide as we hope for an improbable comeback. An overtime victory. A shootout victory. It’s all so exciting. I genuinely feel sorry for fans that don’t get to watch teams like the Flyers on an every day basis. I think we’re ridiculously lucky to be able to do so. The shaky breaths, the clenched fists, the near-heart attacks we have throughout the season are often so worth it.
1. The Promise
After coming so close to winning the Stanley Cup in 2010, the Flyers are still committed to and hungry for a championship. So are the fans. And with all of the changes made to the team this past offseason, it seems like a lot of pieces that will help ensure the Cup coming back to Philadelphia are now in place.
Some people don’t agree with all of the changes made (like me), but others are very excited for this new era of Flyers hockey. The Flyers inspire hope. Their never-say-die attitude is something that we can all live by. We’re all connected by the hope we feel every time we watch a game, by our dedication to the team, and by the hunger for a Flyers Stanley Cup victory. This “new” Flyers team carries a lot of promise, and fans all over the world are very anxious to see if that promise can and will be followed through on come next May.
The Five Reasons to Love the Flyers feature was inspired by the Five Reasons I Love Hockey feature on the Puck Daddy blog. This column should run biweekly on Thursdays. If you are a diehard Flyers fan and would like to submit your list of reasons to love the Flyers, contact us.